MQI's Work in My Lai
On March 16, 1968, American soldiers entered the village of My Lai, and in four hours the U.S. military had killed more than 500 men, women and children. For more than 40 years My Lai has been referred to only in the context of hatred, grief or recrimination.
The significance of Madison Quakers, Inc. projects in My Lai is that they have moved beyond those debilitating emotions and developed projects for the people of that village. This has in turn generated international support as manifested in the Advisory Council members, listed at right.
The below projects have been created and funded by Madison Quakers, Inc., of Madison Wisconsin.
My Lai Loan Fund
The original funding asked for by the Quang Ngai province Women’s Union, $3,000, was delivered to them on January 4, 1994. Shortly afterward another $10,000 was added to this fund and close to 1,000 poor women, many of them widows, were given loans through this fund until this fund was transferred to another, much poorer village named Tinh Hoa.
My Lai Primary Schools
Beginning with a small three room primary school funded by MQI in 1998 we have funded three additional two-floor, eight room, primary schools. These are the only two story, eight room schools in the village and in many neighboring villages.
My Lai Peace Park
The request for this peace park came from the Quang Ngai province Women’s Union. The My Lai Museum, constructed shortly after the end of the American war in Vietnam, instills one with grief, hatred and despair. The My Lai Peace Park serves as an antidote to these emotions. This park has no artillery pieces, no statues, no monuments to war. It is filled, instead, with trees, flowers, shrubs and fish ponds making it a green, living monument to peace.
For extremely poor women, victims of Agent Orange and extremely poor veterans.
The exchange of art work between the children of My Lai and Madison, WI. The first art exchange tool place in 1996 between the children of My Lai and Marquette Elementary School. Since then many elementary schools from around the country have participated in this exchange.
Medical equipment has been delivered to the My Lai clinic in the past.
Willie Manteris, a dentist from Pittsburgh, PA, provided free dental care for the villagers for three weeks in both 2008 and 2009.
MyLai Peace Park Project's Advisory Council
Hugh Thompson, 1943-2006
Glenn Andreotta, 1948-1968
Ron Ridenhour, 1946-1998
Prof. Noam Chomsky
Prof. Joseph Elder
Gloria Emerson, 1929-2004
Prof. Hiroshi Fujimoto
Le Ly Hayslip
Maxine Hong Kingston
Robert Jay Lifton
Sen. George McGovern
Nguyen Ngoc Hung
Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Anne Morrison Welsh
S. Brian Willson
Prof. Marilyn Young